Hey, I just looked at a calendar and realized it was less than three weeks to the start of Pitt’s Spring Practices that (I figured) start on the 15th of March.  At least I think so as I looked at when the drills started last year in relation to the ’17 Spring Game… and  backdated from this year’s April 14th Spring Game.

So – with that we have a lot to discuss with all the new names, faces and members of the upcoming season’s two-deep lineup.  This is the year we’ll really start to see the two-deep and special teams consisting of almost all Pat Narduzzi recruits so we’ll find out if “The Process” is going to start paying dividends.

And regardless of what Paul Zeise says about next year being the year we’ll shine – it is expected that in the 4th year of a HC’s tenure it better be starting to pay real dividends toward championship play.  In other words this is the year all the ‘new hire’ excuses get flushed down the crapper.

Lets take a look at our Pitt Head Coaches’ and what they did in their 4th seasons; we’ll start in modern days with Johnny Majors’ first go-round:

Johnny Majors – 1976 – 12-0: This is indeed a nice way to start off any Pitt football list.  This was his 12-0 national championship season with a win in the Sugar Bowl. He built up to that by going: 6-5-1 in his first year then: 7-4, 8-4 & 12-0.

JM’s 4TH YEAR STARSRB Tony Dorsett (2150 yards @ 5.0 ypc and 22 TDs), QB Matt Cavanaugh (1046 yards w/ 9 TDs to 3 INTs and a 160.5 QB rating), Safety Bob Jury (10 INTs)

Jackie Sherrill – 1980 – 11-1: Sherrill was consistent as hell with a three-year lead-up of 9-8, 11-1, 11-1 to his 1983 4th year of an 11-1 record and win in the Gator Bowl.

JS’s 4TH YEAR STARS: QB Dan Marino (1609 yards w/ 15 TDs), RB Randy McMillan (692 yards and 10 TDs), WR Dwight Collins (827 yards @ 27.6 (!) ypc), LB Sal Sunseri (5 INTs) and CB Lynn Thomas (5 INTs)

Foge Fazio – 1985 – 5-5-1 Of all the recent Pitt HC’s I think Foge Fazio was one of the best beloved.  He was old-time Pitt football and was a soldier who was on Sherrill’s staff as the Defensive Coordinator than fleeted up to HC. However, he kinda sucked as a HC and we saw the team slide backwards under him. Taking the reins in 1982 he started off 9-3, went 8-3 the next year then dropped to 3-7-1 and finished an even 5-5-1 before being fired.

FF’s 4TH YEAR STARS RB Charles Gladman (1085 yards @ 5.6 ypc)    

Mike Gottfried – 1989  8-3: Gottfried follow Fazio and finished his first year at the helm with an identical 5-5-1. He went up to 8-4 then 6-5 and finished back up again with a 8-3-1 record.

MG’s 4TH YEAR STARS: QB Alex Van Pelt (2527 yards for 15 TDs), RB Curvin Richards  (1126 for 5.4 ypc), WR Henry Tuten (37 catches for 879 yards @ 23.8 ypc)

Johnny Majors – 1996  4-7:    Pitt’s theme of “Back to the Future” never panned out with Majors II. He came aboard in 1993 and posted a 3-8 year.  Following that we saw: 3-8, 2-9 and a final 4-7.

JM II’s STARS:  None Really

Walt Harris – 2000  7-5 Harris took over a dumpster fire and did well with it in his first four years considering what he had to work with – which truly wasn’t a whole lot.  In 1997 he went 6-6 for a decent start and a jump up from the previous 4-7 season under Majors II.  Then he dived and went 2-9, then 5-6 before rising to his fourth year of  7-5.  He lost the Insight Bowl that year.

WH’s 4TH YEAR STARS: QB John Turman (2135 yards for 18 TDs), RB Kevan Barlow (1053 @ 5.3 YPC), WR Antonio Bryant (1302 @ 19.1 ypc and 11 TDs)

Dave Wannstedt – 2008  9-4: In his initial year DW slid backwards in the win column posting a 5-6 record in 2005.  He stayed around that level the next two years with a 6-6 then 5-7 successive records.  However his sterling recruiting kicked in his 4th  year when he got off the schnide and went 9-4 for the most wins Pitt had since Harris posted nine wins in his sixth year.  That year he coached in one of the most disappointing games in memory when we took a decent 27.7 ppg scoring offense into a rainy and windy Sun Bowl and we were was shut out for a loss.

DW’s 4TH YEAR STARSRB LeSean McCoy (1488 @ 4.8 ypc), LB Scott McKillop (137 tackles with 17.5 TFLs)

Those were it for modern Pitt coaches who made it into a 4th year at Pitt.

You can see their results were mixed.  Back in the ’70s our two best HCs ever,  Majors (12-0) and Sherrill (11-1), did wonderfully in their 4th years.  Gottfried (8-3) and Wannstedt (9-4) jumped up in their 4th years also while Fazio (5-5-1)  and Majors (4-7)  II did also but just a bit.

Interestingly both Fazio and Gottfried had better seasons prior to  their fourth years.

So this makes me wonder what we are going to see this season.  Can Narduzzi drag that ‘games won’ number upwards out of the red?  I always wait until the last week of fall camp to do formal predictions for the next season and we’ll do that again this season.  But over the next two weeks I’ll take closer looks at the individual team units; QB, RB, TE, OL and WR on offense and then interspersed with those we’ll discuss the LB, DL, DEs, CB and Safeties.  Then later right before the Spring Drills we’ll address the Special Teams.

I have to say that at this point in time, and it really is so very early, I’m more worried about this season than any other Narduzzi-coached year before… and that’s saying something even when I knew that QB Max Browne was going to be a bust before last season.

Four your info here is the Pitt two-deep for the last game against Miami – the way I see it at this early date we’ll have eight starters on offense; eight starters on defense and all our Special Teams members filled by Narduzzi recruits or transfers.  It is all on him for 2018 – no more point at Paul Chryst for poor personnel out on the field (if that is what you though earlier).

Miami 2-deep

Next up will be a look at the prospective RBs.

NOTES: As as I stated yesterday I am going to be more strict on policing the comments and the commenters than I have been in the past. I’m going to try to change my own spots as far as overall negativity goes and I’m hoping other people will look at each individual situation/issue and be positive or negative as it occurs.

I want honesty and enlightenment on here more than anything else but I also want civility and for The Pitt POV to be a pleasant thing for everybody to read and discuss,  thanks.

We have a few things on tap as far as POV friends go. One will be a golf outing sometime in late spring or maybe early fall and I’m hoping we can try to do something special around that.

Another one will be a tailgate for the spring game that’s going to be well-attended I think…at least I hope so we as all want to watch Kenny Pickett play.

123 thoughts on “Pre-Spring Drills & POV’s Way Forward

  1. Usually the 2-deep is pretty accurate and kept updated, but I have seen a handful of times when it really doesn’t indicate who actually plays.

    The example above is Phil Campbell who is is listed as 3rd team strong safety, yet played almost the entire game and apparently did a fine job. And oh yea, check out the QB position.

    But to the point that Reed is making is that I see a lot returnees on defense, who as expected, really improved as the year progressed (the UNC fiasco notwithstanding). I thought they performed very well the final 2 games, against ranked teams. And I very much look forward to watching them play this season.

    The offense … not so much

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      1. I just remember wondering early in the game, who in the heck is that #24? … since it was a new number to me. And then I start looking for it and kept noticing it as the game progressed. Also, since Whitehead played, I assumed Campbell played Free Safety (Hamlin was injured early vs UNC and didn’t play much the last 3 games, as I recall)

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  2. Paul Zeise just had a great tweet. Taking a cue from the Olympics … the NCAA seeds this year should go to the … Athletes from Durham NC … the Athletes from Tuscon, AZ … the Athletes from Chapel Hill, NC, etc

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It would be so nice and civil if disagreements with a commenter could just be that and not an attack on the commenter’s persona. To me that is not honest dissent but a resort to cowardice. Too many times if one person can’t beat or doesn’t like someone’s argument, then he attacks the person. That’s what too many politicians do. Reed, thanks. Keep the commenters civil.

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  4. What a great time of the year, as soon as March Madness is over, the pain should dissipate. Wouldn’t it be great if the Feds…drop indictments on Basketball criminals during the tournament, not likely. Could you imagine a coach getting taken off the floor in handcuffs on National TV? Anyway, dream sequence over…

    Can’t wait for Reed’s reporting from Spring Camp…Oh wait, right… blackout ensues… no first person account.

    Only dribs and drabs from the PR department.

    Hopefully lots of real position battles.

    Looking at the two deep, shows our concerns for the O-line. Hopefully the young guys and transfers can mesh into a serviceable line. Going to be an interesting story.

    I think another interesting story will be whether Hamlin and Ford, the two biggest gets of Narduzzi’s recruiting, can actually be productive on the field, for a whole season. Will they be the marquis guys on the defense?

    I do think the D-line will be much better this year, with a full year experience for most, and another year in the weight room. Same with the linebackers.

    If it weren’t for the tough schedule, especially on the road, and the questionable offensive line, I would be feeling pretty good.

    Hopefully some of Narduzzi’s young guys really push for playing time.

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    1. Mark – something to look for in the ‘inheritances’ of new HCs is what the program went through immediately before they took over.

      With Harris the program was in pretty bad shape. Wannstedt was given a team that just went 9, 8, and 8 wins and a BCS bowl game. I think most Pitt fans feel he should have done better in the beginning of his six years however.

      I feel Pat Narduzzi inherited a great offense and found the QB he needed to make it work. I also think his defensive players already here were decent also. But it was a very nice way to start off by going 8-5 and 8-5 his first two years.

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      1. Reed, you make good points but we all make points to support our biases. For example, you talked about the win totals in the 3 years prior to Wanny but make no mention of the win totals in the 3 years prior to Narduzzi.

        Conversely, you make no mention of the linemen that Wanny was left with, but made it a point when you talk about the transition between PC and PN.

        WE ALL DO IT …. just making an example.

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  5. Thankfully and mercifully basketball season is over. The POV has been a refuge for me but the negativity over the past few months has been a bit much. Let’s get back to having some fun and and BSing like buddies at the local pub.

    Let’s go Duzz and staff. Grow those kids into 4 star talent. Looking forward to the D continuing to improve while the O gels and hopefully, the new coaching hires bring in some fire and can coach and recruit.

    Looking forward to an exciting season on the POV the place that real PITT fans gather.

    Reed, what ever happened to the writer who did a couple of articles in football season? Can’t think of his name. he did a nice job when he contributed.

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  6. March 6 may/will be our last BB game as we face either CUSE or ND in ACC tourney. Maybe nothing happens on March 7. It could be a long spring/summer.

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  7. It is interesting to note that the most recent BB teams admitted to the ACC; LOU, ND, CUSE and us, all have poor ACC records and may not make NCAAs. But we get to share equally in the money.

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    1. I worry that if we don’t improve in basketball in the next five years, we could get das booted from the ACC. We need to show the brass in Greensboro that we want to win and are not like the Pirates’ Bob Nutting who just cares about maximizing those profits.

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  8. Very nice FB article – thanks Reed. Well I guess 8-4 to be the low water mark for Duzz in his 4th year at Pitt, to even be in the discussion with Gottfried and Wannstedt.

    At WR we have six serviceable players – we need 2 to shine to get to 8 wins.

    At RB we have five very capable players – again we need 2 to shine to get 8 wins.

    At QB we have one young, inexperienced, high ceiling player in Pickett – we need a back-up.

    At TE we have three players that will see the field – we need 2 to shine to get to 8 wins.

    At FB we have a stud in Aston – we need him to remain healthy and be used as an offensive weapon again.

    The OLine has a decent 2-deep (10 players) and a new coach who must find five guys (burgers and fries) to get 8 wins.

    Holder – need to find one as both from last season’s 2-deep are gone.

    Kick returner – same as holder.

    Newcomers who can have a star like impact – WR Shockey Jacque-Louise and TE Reeves

    On offense, we have depth except at QB. This unit, lead by OC Watson needs to up it’s game in 2018 and score more points than the 2017 average. The D has more depth and should show the Duzz D we have been expecting all along.

    Thanks again Reed for taking my mind off of Pitt BB.

    H2P!

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    1. Nice summary EE, and nice article Reed.

      We need luck to go our way with low injuries, especially at positions of low depth.

      At LB, I like that we enter the season with experience. Odowu and Brightwell were solid. Zeise came on strong, especially against Miami. Reynolds gained valuable experience as did Pine and a few others. But, if one or two of the starters gets injured and are out for two or three games, then this unit goes from promising to weak, and could cost us in the W column.

      The LB and QB health will be key this coming season.

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    2. Erie – within the RBs, its important that Ollison continue to develop his blocking skills due to the unknowns with the OL. I am anxious to hear if Aston is indeed fully recovered and if he can regain the form he had prior to the injuries.

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  9. Well when we take a closer look at the depth chart above it clearly shows the difference between the offense and defense coming into this year. Yes Narduzzi recruits will dominate both starting units and it really is about time for that to be the case.

    On offense almost the entire unit will be made up of Narduzzi’s players. The bad news is that only four are returning starters… and that includes Hall at RB who was only a part time starter and Bookser who are not Narduzzi’s boys of of fall. That also excludes some of the O-Line as there is no way of telling who may start there and I’m not sure how much Herndon or Dintino will factor in?

    On defense however only Maddox and Whitehead will not return. The nine others are Narduzzi players and returning starters. Replacing the fading Whitehead will be P Ford who may not be a drop off at all and possibly an upgrade. Maddox will be missed as he was not only a good CB but very underappreciated.

    Now factor in another year in the weight room and maturity and hopefully better health from a few players namely Hamlin as one. Add in the possible return of Wirginis and this unit looks to be strong moving forward.

    I’ve thought that too much has been made about perceived tendencies by Narduzzi but this year will be telling to see if Pat is a creature of habit or not. I think and hope we will see something a little different this year as far as HCPN being more creative on the field.

    Sure is nice to talk a little football for a change. ike

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  10. I would vote no to televising the game in the local Pittsburgh area – use the old “blackout” theory and get more butts in the seats.

    Just my opinion – I’m going to attempt to fit this game into my schedule – golf on Friday, Spring game on Saturday, church on Sunday…

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  11. The difficult schedule for this year definitely will diminish Narduzzi’s record and he will be penalized by his detractors for sure. There are some legit concerns with this team though such as OLine, Wide Receivers, and Tight End. I am thinking the defense will be pretty good but we will greatly miss Whitehead and Maddox especially at the beginning of the season. I am thinking 6-7 wins this year.

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    1. PittMan – all three areas you have legit concerns with could also turnout to be team strengths.

      OLine – two starters return in Morrissey and Bookser. The following players make-up the 2-deep –

      6’5″ 305lbs Stefano Millin – Grad Transfer
      6’5″ 310ibs Brown – JUCO
      6’4″ 310lbs Herndon – 5th Yr SR
      6’3″ 315lbs Dintino – 5th Yr SR
      6’5″ 320lbs Pilato – 4th Yr under Duzz
      6’6″ 350lbs Morgan – 3rd Yr under Duzz
      6’4″ 310lbs Hargrove – 3rd Yr under Duzz
      6’5″ 315lbs Drake – 2nd Yr under Duzz
      6’5″ 325ibs Warren – 2nd Yr under Duzz

      WR – best player of this group in 2017 is back – RaRa Lopes – add in the Ffrench connection of Maurice and Shockey, along with the tall tandem of Mathews and Flowers and then the unknown Florida tandem of Butler-Jenkins and M.Smith. Not bad – then the oft-injured Tipton is back.

      TE – Gronk Reeves and Clark make a nice pairing IMO.

      H2P!

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    2. The TEs will be a strength, not a weakness. Paris Ford, if he plays up to his potential quickly, will ease the pain of losing Whitehead early. The O-Line combined with the new O-Line coach is the big question mark on this team going into Spring drills.

      Too early for season record predictions at this point other than to say if an 8-4 regular season doesn’t materialize then Narduzzi isn’t the coach that I think he is.

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  12. i stated earlier that we end 6-6 with us winning Coastal at 5-3. That means losing to PSU and that disturbs me greatly. I have to really think about that.

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  13. I just drafted an article about the TEs so hold your horses for a day. It will post at 11:30 tonight.

    I’ll try to get one up every two days unless someone sends in an article and that will take priority.

    Does anyone want me to post ACC & NCAA TOURNAMENT threads even though Pitt won’t be in either (obviously)?

    I have them drafted…let me know your thoughts.

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  14. We will challenge in the Coastal if Pickett stays upright the entire season. Hopefully the JC transfers along graduate lineman coming in will help to stabilize the offensive line this season. If nothing else helping to keep Pickett in the game may give us a chance to challenge the record of Narduzzi’s first two seasons.

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  15. It will probably take the oline half the season to start to gel as a unit and I look for them to be much more solid by years end. Let’s hope it doesn’t take them too long to get it together.
    This is a year that it would be better if our ooc games were towards the end of the year instead of the beginning, mainly for that reason, and the entire offense as a whole.

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  16. As we enter another Spring of Pitt football and for all those who have given up hope and feel consigned to being an alumni of irrelevant Pitt: listen to this. My son (Pitt Pharmacy 2013) who is visiting my daughter (Pitt Elementary Education 2015) and is teaching in Thailand, just Face-booked photos of what he found in a Krabi, Thailand 20 baht store ($1 dollar store). He found Pitt, his Pitt Pharmacy Fraternity Phi Delta Chi (“We lift our mugs and drink to drugs”), and yes, ugh Penn State shirts. The only other American college shirts they had were for Stanford. You may have to travel half-way across the globe to find relevancy; but someone out there likes us.

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  17. Good observation, Frank MD, about the outside teams that came into the ACC not doing so well. If you add in Boston College, and maybe Miami (not sure they haven’t bought their players), the teams coming in have not really been able to match the success and consistent recruiting results of the traditional ACC teams. I’m wondering if there will ever be parity among the outsiders and the ACC blue bloods until the hall of fame coaches leave. Interesting that even with all the tradition, there have been recruiting questions involving Duke, NC and NC State, and NC has even been caught with the academic scandal.

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    1. Do you mean solely this year? Do you mean solely in ACC conference play?

      ND was an Elite Eight team two years ago. Syracuse was a Final Four team two years ago. Louisville and ND were Elite Eight teams three years ago.

      Louisville and ND finished #3 and #4 in conference last season ahead of Duke.

      Louisville and ND finished #4 and #6 in conference two seasons ago. Duke was #5.

      Louisville and ND finished #3 and #4 in conference three seasons ago ahead of UNC.

      Syracuse finished #2 and Pitt #5 in conference four seasons ago. Duke and UNC finished #3 and #4.

      Granted Louisville’s record is suspect, but it seems like the new ACC blood has been competitive with the “blue bloods”.

      I believe that Pitt did beat UNC two times and Duke once under Dixon in ACC play including tournaments.

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      1. Additionally in Pitt’s first season(2013-2014) in the ACC, we made it to the semi-finals of the ACC Tournament beating North Carolina 80-75. Before losing by 3 points to Virginia.

        So this has been a very quick dissent into oblivion. All courtesy of Gallagher, BoT and their hatchet man…..Herman !

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  18. Thanks, Barvo. You’ve changed my mind on this a good bit, but I would leave out Louisville with their record of cheating. And CUSE may fall into that category as well. I think the “outside” schools have shown they can compete and do well in a given year, but can they do it consistently? Just as Duke and NC may have “down” years occasionally but not consistently. And it looks like NC State may have violated some rules. ND is a tough place to recruit and I really like their coach. But this year, not so much.

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  19. It will be a long time before Pitt enters the picture positively on the BB side of the ledger in ACC play IMO.—Let’s get back to football and the spring game. Pitt BB is much too depressing to bring up on any forum at this point in time.

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  20. I’m with you, jrnpitt. Can’t wait for Spring ball, but Reed needs to crack the Narduzzi security zone to get in and give us some observations. Are we going to see the Narduzzi wall going up again?

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  21. Note a very nice writeup on Pitt’s Florida recruiting class this year on PSN today. If this analyst’s observations on this class pans out Narduzzi and staff may have hit the jackpot with these 4 recruits.

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  22. From the PSN article…

    “Pitt ran the ball well last year. Their offensive system sets itself up by using receivers (like Shocky),” added Blustein. “(Pitt offensive coordinator Shawn Watson) used slot guys and put a lot of guys in motion.”

    Wonder which Pitt he watched? We had a terrible 3.9 ypc rushing avg last season. Let’s hope Shocky fills QH’s role of 2016.

    http://pittsburghsportsnow.com/2018/02/26/larry-blustein-pitts-2018-florida-recruiting-class/

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  23. I’m going to really try to “look on the bright side” this off season. I know I’ve tended to be more negative regarding this team and it’s certainly affecting my enjoyment of the games. That said, it’s kind of a “chicken and egg” thing, isn’t it?

    Am I more negative because of the actual situation or is my negativity causing me to to look at the situation differently? To be quite frank, I find myself being more “negative” simply as a correction to the things I read here being so overly “optimistic”.

    Let me explain.. Let’s assume I believe Joe Montana to be ONE of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game- I do. Let’s also I assume I don’t believe him to be THE best ever- I don’t. Now, assume on this blog I read several posters continue to hammer away at EVERY single virtue of Montana’s play, while completely ignoring his deficiencies and the comparative play of others. If I then try to rebut those omissions or point out flaws in his game, people say I “hate” him or I don’t think he’s any good. And yet, that couldn’t be further from the truth.

    It just gets a bit tiresome to hear about how strong a position group will be, when most of those players hasn’t played any meaningful snaps or how we’re going to compete in the Coastal when there’s virtually no anecdotal evidence to support that. Or, how about people making excuses for poor recruiting rankings (I know, I know we won’t know if the recruiting is ACTUALLY good for a few years) by saying “it can’t be done at Pitt”, when just 5 years ago Wannstedt recruited pretty well.

    There are times when I’m positive and “optimistic”. Prior to 2016 I was EXTREMELY confident we’d beat PSU and I felt like a 8-10 win season was not only possible but likely. Last year however, there was simply NO way anyone could confidently expect a winning season. Was it possible? Sure. Was it likely? No.

    As mentioned above, we all can pick and choose “facts” to support our argument. But isn’t the idea to gather and organize the facts and THEN formulate an opinion? I think far too many decide we’re going to be good and then selectively point out the facts that fit that narrative.

    I want Pitt to win 10+ games every year. And if we had a strong, experienced line returning and didn’t have complete unknowns at WR (aside from Lopes) and TE, I’d be “optimistic.” Some of the kids that haven’t played at OL, WR & TE might turn out to be great but NONE of us have seen it. And before you folks cite that improving defense, don’t forget that unit was 69th in Total defense and 65th in scoring defense- with Jordan Whitehead. Saying we’ll be good is a HOPE not a PREDICTION.

    Like most, I’ll save my PREDICTION until closer to the season but far too much is unknown to actually assert this team will have a winning record, let alone compete for the Coastal. Maybe I wouldn’t spend this much time pointing put the negative if there was just a bit more reason used, rather than, “We’re gonna win 9 games! Why? Because I’m a Pitt fan and want it to be true.”

    Damn! There I go being negative again..

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    1. Concur with your rationale Jay91. Unless Otis gets canned, his negative vibes will have continued detrimental effect on all of Pitt’s teams, including the football team. And I only see 3 or 4 wins tops next year if Otis is allowed to continue Pitt’s national laughing stock status.

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        1. Albany, GT, Syracuse and Wake Forest look winnable. We are going to get STOMPED by PSU. I’m thinking 6 wins at the most, three at the worst. Considering one is against DI-AA (FCS, whatever), that’s pretty bad. But hey, it’s because of strength of schedule or Paul Chryst or….

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          1. I’ll give you those four wins.

            Now, why not Duke, UCF, uva and unc?

            I say we can steal one from psux or nd.

            The game we have the potential to get stomped is the miami game. Revenge can be a …..

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          2. I agree with Albany (lol) and Syracuse (as they haven’t beaten us 2 years in a row since 00 and 01 seasons). Last 2 years that included Cuse winning every Pitt/Cuse game in the 1990’s. GT game is home, but that game is always iffy since they run the Triple Option.

            Pitt and Wake Forest have NEVER played in football, so who knows how that will play out, game is
            in Winston-Salem though.

            You’d think we’d be competitive in the Virginia game as well. Pitt has won 3 in a row in that series.

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              1. No way Pitt loses to Duke at home. Pitt should beat Virginia and Syracuse, too. Luckily Wake loss its QB. If the Deacons have a viable backup they will be tough with 19 starters back.

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    2. Jay91 – glass half full vs glass half empty. I’m optimistic (glass half full) right now about Pitt FB because there are a lot of unknowns with this team. I find it fun to speculate and look at the positive aspects of the players and coaches, hoping they fill the glass to 3/4’s full or even a slim, outside chance that 76 happens again and the glass overflows.

      As a business CEO, I have an optimistic view of my employees and company as a whole. Every employee has issues and so does our company – I attempt to draw out the employee’s strengths and reward them for outstanding work. The two CEO’s before me were realists (glass half empty) and both were successful in the ten year runs they had. We’ve tripled the size of the company in the 18 year run I’ve had as CEO – we do it by constantly looking for ways to improve, never settling for mediocrity. This Wednesday, we have a planned celebratation event for our employees who in 2017 produced the best year ever in our 38 year history.

      And last month we ID’d the six lowest performers and gave them their pink slips and hired two potentially high performers.

      Do I see flaws in this Pitt FB team? Absolutely, and lots of them, including the coaching staff. But I also see tremendous potential and a HC with a ton of passion who wants to win as much as I do. And he has a dislyke for psux that rivals mine.

      Earlier today (10:50am) I stated that I thought Duzz needed to win at least 8 games this season to be in the same discussion with Wanny and Gottfried.

      Not a prediction, just an opinion. I too will wait until Fall Camp to make my 2018 prediction.

      If you are going to the Spring Game, let me know, maybe we can carpool from Central PA.

      H2P!

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      1. I’m waiting to see how my schedule works out, in regards to the spring game. I’ll let you know!

        I get your optimistic approach with your staff and your company. I started a small business from scratch in 2013 when the economy wasn’t booming. That takes some optimism!

        But I’m guessing that you recognize that seeing potential in someone or some situation is not the same thing as saying it’s already been achieved.

        I’m rooting for every kid in that roster- simply because he puts on a Pitt uniform and represents our school. Some of them unfortunately just aren’t good enough. As you mentioned, you recognized 6 employees that just weren’t good enough. We’re you being “negative” in that assessment, or simply realizing that they weren’t the ones nevessary to reach your goals?

        I just haven’t seen ON FIELD performances from these guys that make me anything other than nervous but hopeful.

        H2P

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      1. I think when only 2 sections of the 8 of the Oakland Zoo aren’t even filled up, the students are voting
        by their absence. Not even free fantas will solve that problem, and the other 10,000 empty seats.

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      1. Me too, but there are 2 doing it, one peeking out from under the bag and the one looking down with the snug fit bag.

        What caught my eye first was the kid on the left who cut out the eye hole along the side to allow some peripheral vision. LOL!

        Like

    1. VOR – I can tell you and you probably already know that we ain’t seeing nothin until the psux game in September. Is that wrong? Not sure, but it is our HC’s way and he ain’t changing.

      Like

        1. Thanks!

          Didn’t cost me a cent, but it did cost me a month of no posting on the POV. My WordPress credentials got messed up and I couldn’t spend time to fix it cause I got rid of six employees and we had to train the two new hires while covering for the six who were gone.

          Addition by subtraction – remember? It is working out great now.

          Like

  24. Hey Jay, good luck with the positive thingie. It takes lots of practice. 🙂

    Most of the positive vibes last year were do to the transfer of Max and that was a bust.

    Also, about this coming years defense. That unit really came on strong late last year. I don’t think I’m fooling myself thinking the D may be much better this year. Although the tough schedule may prove me wrong ….. again ……. ike

    Like

  25. Hmmm. Back to the optimist, pessimist, realist discussion.

    I consider myself optimistic but tend to be realistic about things meaning a winning formula is to expect less but deliver more. In the business world, that works well for senior management.

    Too much optimism is just not real and dilutes the argument. Just fluff.

    I find the more negative leaning comments easier to digest with hopes that performance ultimately indicates things are better, or trending as such. But that’s just me.

    Like

  26. Congrats to Dixon. (cbs sports)

    Winner: TCU
    A bubble team no more. TCU, which entered Saturday with some work to do to push itself comfortably off the bubble conversation, knocked off Baylor 82-72. It is the eighth win within the Big 12 for the Horned Frogs, and one that likely doubles as an unofficial punched NCAA Tournament ticket.

    If that holds (the Horned Frogs entered Saturday as a No. 6 seed in Bracketology), it will be the first time since 1998 TCU makes it to the Big Dance. A remarkable turnaround in the second year of the promising Jamie Dixon era..

    Like

  27. Loser: Pittsburgh
    Pittsburgh scored 7 points in the first half versus No. 1 Virginia. It took the Panthers 24 minutes to get into double digits.

    That’s really, really bad, even if the 66-37 final looks at least halfway respectable. Need I really say more?

    Marc Davis

    @marcdavissports
    ESPNU just said that Pitt’s 7 points are the fewest by any team in any half in any division this season. @NBC12

    Like

  28. If posts are very negative but are explained out that’s a different story than just throwing negatives up every chance we get.

    I’ll still be pretty negative (OK, cautious) about the upcoming season I think but will keep an open mind. The thing is what we read and hear out of camps is sometimes a lot different than what actually transpired.

    Jay has a good point about Montana above; I feel that way about Dan Marino. Don’t get me wrong! He was a very good QB in college but if someone asked me to rank my top three Pitt players it would be Dorsett, Fitz and Aaron Donald.

    They truly dominated the other teams. Marino would be 4th though…he was a much better Pro than college player and his supporting cast was waaaay better than the other three’s were.

    Like

      1. Or Bennett complaining at halftime that his guys gave up too many open looks.

        Classic one liner from a HC whose team gave up one basket in 20 minutes.

        Laughable, unless you are a Pitt fan or KS family member.

        Like

  29. what interests me are the teams we played then. Some national powers…wow
    and the fact that Pitt stadium averaged 45k even in Pitt’s glory years
    Yet some seem to think Pitt should be able to average far more than that today
    Really, with half the population gone and 35 years of mediocrity and a legit 3 pro sports town
    Play in a smaller venue
    And keep rivalries with teams like WVU and Navy.
    The Domers and Nitters can p-off

    Like

  30. what hasnt changed in 50 years is Pedo State playing nobody on their schedule and padding wins
    And nobody for a long period of time was Pitt

    Like

  31. couple things:

    Reed, can’t believe Hugh Green isn’t in your top four?

    Jay, great scenario but don’t forget that works both ways. If someone just spouts off multiple times a day how lousy someone is without any backing merit? Some people may defend by nature.

    Tx, the attendance was off back in the 70’s for the same reason the attendance is down now. A couple horrible decades preceding both. The difference is that PITT stunk to high heavens in the 50 and 60’s and recently the football program was sabotaged by the administration.

    Like

  32. Pitt wasn’t that bad in the era of John Michelosen (1955-1965) as we went 56-49-7.

    Those years included a trip to the Sugar Bowl, the Gator Bowl and the famous 1963 #4 ranked Pitt team
    that went 9-1.

    Finished ranked in the Top 20, four (4) of those years.

    The era of 1990 to 1999 was much worse. 37 wins & 74 losses & 1 tie.

    Actually when you consider that, attendance from 2000-2010 at home games wasn’t that bad. As we lost
    a whole decade of fans/alumni in the 1990’s.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Maybe all part of a devious plan, then to have little resistance in destroying Pitt Stadium.

      They could have never gotten away with that had Pitt been even a .500 team in the ’90’s.

      Like

    2. The worst time for Pitt to kill football as it was taking off when ABC threw all its chips in on college football. Soon pay-perview took shape, and I remember in college with the press of a button I could watch a game that showed on my bill for $4.99.

      Had Pitt not threw away a decade, let Gottfried recruit like he did and average about eight wins a season we’re looking at being decent at football since 1973 instead of a doughnut decade.

      What a stupid decision I’m sure some alums thought was worth it.

      Like

  33. In both the 60’s and 90’s Pitt averaged 3 wins per year.
    Pitt did make 1 bowl in the 90’s
    Liberty in Memphis on New Years Eve
    I was there

    Like

    1. Good guess, as Northwestern was one of the worst teams every year back then, like Kansas State was.
      But they did manage to win 2 games in 1972 and one of those 2 wins was over the Panthers.

      Like

  34. —Would really like to see the OLinemen get into better shape for this season. Jones-Smith and Officer looked too heavy last year. We need leaner and meaner.

    —Big concern with the Defense is whether we can get consistent pass-rush pressure from the defensive ends. Maybe Weaver or Jones or Hendrix step it up, but Coach Duzz is still searching for “that guy” — as evidenced by all the DEs in the present recruiting class…

    Go Pitt.

    Like

  35. Emel— I was a student at Pitt for two of the 1- 9 seasons. And I attended every home game.

    Pitt’s records for my 4 years were: 1-9, 1-9, 4-6, and 5-5. Even back then, believe it or don’t, I went into each season with high hopes for the up-coming season… 🙂

    Go Pitt.

    Like

    1. Yeah but we were 5-1 and ranked in that 4th season. Then came Syracuse in old Archibald Stadium and we never won another game. I roomed with the late great Charlie Hall that summer. The internal division of blacks vs whites killed that team. I too, never missed a home game in those 4 years. Pitt Football came first in my life then and still does today. What a long strange trip it’s been!

      Like

    2. Well you know when you’re young like that, you are much more positive overall and life has not made you much of a cynic. Oh to be young and stupid…..which is why those are the ones they send to war.

      Like

    1. Heather – who are your top 3 candidates to replace KS?

      If she was PC, she should say that we’ll evaluate the program at seasons’s end
      something very vague and definitely not an endorsement of this hot mess but also not a strong condemnation

      Its politics so say very little of substance and if you must, contradict, lie and be hypocritical
      Now someone who is not versed in this game like me could very well say some hypothetical question and a truthful answer like:

      What would any sane person do at seasons end when the current coach was hired by the former AD under questionable circumstance, when you are losing millions in revenue each year, when your season ticket holders are bailing and boosters refusing to donate, when brand equity is quickly eroding, when players are regressing, when recruiting is blah, when students wear bags over their heads, and when the vast majority of Pitt fans want the head coach gone?

      Answer – You burn the Muderfocker down.

      Like

  36. It’s good to see some of the ‘originals’ back on the POV. All of these comments I could read and enjoy without any anger,….even if I disagreed. Reed, thanks for getting things back on track. Let’s continue to have fun.

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Major and Dan…Was there too. Probably sat within a stone’s throw of Major and didn’t know it. Haha. Richman, I was thinking the same thing. Fun is good.

    Like

    1. Dan and Fran — Remember these guys?

      QB Frank Gustine; RB Denny Ferris; WR Skip Orsalak; QB Davey “White Shoes” Havern; RB Joe
      McCain; DB Jeff Barr; TE George “Doc” Medich; LB Ralph Cindrich….

      Go Pitt.

      Like

  38. Ike, when my dad retired he used to joke that he woke up at “the crack of noon”. Speaking of noon, I see Pitt offered a TE from Florida named Gary Cooper. Hope he doesn’t forsake us.

    Like

  39. Answer to Emel trivia:

    1967 Wisconsin on the road – happy to have seen that one live with the Pitt Band

    1968 William and Mary at home

    1972 BC at home – watched that one live with Dan72 . After a long phone debate we opted to go to the game. Decided that if we won a game we wouldnt want to miss it.

    Like

    1. Correct Dinosaur 71 ! And now I know where you got the name 🙂

      Strange score of the Pitt/Wisconsin game…13-11 @ Camp Randall
      Pitt only scored in double digits, 3 of the 10 games that year.

      Your award for answering correctly is a lifesize cardboard cutout of either Heather or Ming the Merciless.

      Like

  40. That PS game Erie Express referred to saw PS take off and outscore Pitt only because the PS DBs got away with murder. Pitt had to rotate receivers a lot because of the way they got beat up. We were screaming our heads off it looked like Joe brought his own refs along.

    Like

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